Sport, Community, and Identity
This book explores the complicated, double-edged process of inclusion and exclusion, of rooting for the home team. It examines the ways different American communities (big cities, small rural towns, suburbs, college towns, and so forth) used or use sport to create and maintain a sense of their collective identity. Predicated on the idea that rooting for local athletes and home teams often symbolizes a community's preferred understanding of itself, and that doing so is an expression of connectedness, the book demonstrates how sport brings people together yet also contributes to separation, misunderstanding, and antagonism. It considers the complicated, multilayered lived experiences that arise from playing together, playing apart, and rooting for the home team by looking at professional and amateur sports, from the 1920s to the present, played in different parts of the United States: these include golf, basketball, baseball, softball, and football.
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